Health Care

Development of Comprehensive Care Plans

Summary

Require a comprehensive care plan for every nursing home-eligible individual—developed with the participation of the affected individuals and their families—which reflects the full range of human needs, including spiritual fulfillment, and which takes into consideration the availability of institutional and home- and community-based services appropriate to the needs of each such individual.

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Increase Medicaid Reimbursement Rates for Essential Health Services

Summary

Providing services to Medicaid recipients, particularly emergency room and outpatient services, creates significant problems for providers who cannot meet their costs.  In addition, access to health care services is a significant problem for low- and moderate-income individuals, especially in rural areas and in inner cities, and dental, behavioral health and substance abuse services are limited due to inadequate payment rates and program funding.

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Collaborative Efforts to Address the Health Care Workforce Shortage

Summary

A persistent and growing shortage of certified nursing assistants (CNAs), home health aides (HHAs), and licensed and registered nurses, and teachers in nursing schools poses a substantial challenge to the ability of health care providers to meet the health care needs of our communities.  This shortage disproportionately impacts services for the frail elderly and services in rural and inner-city communities, and it undercuts efforts to encourage home- and community-based service provision as an alternative to institutional care.

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Promote Expansion of Home- and Community-based Health Care

Summary

Home- and community-based services (HCBS) allow individuals who might otherwise seek nursing home care to remain in their homes close to supporting family and community and provides necessary care to hospital patients upon discharge.  Without adequate HCBS, patients will remain in high-cost and inappropriate settings. The Medicaid cuts instituted in the 2011 budget at the recommendation of the Medicaid Redesign Task Force disproportionately impacted home care providers.

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Support Adequate Financing for A Reconfigured Health Care Delivery System

Summary

Changes in the delivery of health care, along with demographic and health workforce changes, have necessitated a reconfiguring of the state’s institutional health care infrastructure.  The state’s efforts to reconfigure the health care delivery system culminated in the Berger Commission report, which called for the closure of numerous hospitals and nursing homes and the reconfiguration of scores more.  The costs of such actions, however, were only partially recognized, and institutions are left with having to finance their closure, consolidation, or reconfiguration, leading to continued upheaval in the health care delivery system.

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Support Investment in Health Care Infrastructure

Summary

Legislative proposals have been put forward in recent years to establish a Health Care Community Reinvestment Fund, capitalized with a portion of health insurers’ profits, to be used to enhance the state’s healthcare delivery infrastructure.

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Streamline Health System Administrative Processes

Summary

Despite recent efforts to expand opportunities for health insurance coverage, little has been done to apply contemporary information technology to reduce costs overall, and such efforts have generally been focused on service reduction or artificial reductions in reimbursement.  Streamlined processes and application of advanced information technology hold the promise for administrative savings and reduction of errors.

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